Date of Award

Spring 5-4-2018

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Clinical Psychology (PhD)


Clinical Psychology

First Advisor/Committee Member

Amy Mezulis

Second Advisor/Committee Member

Lynette Bikos

Third Advisor/Committee Member

Elizabeth Boyer


This study investigated the impact of ZGiRLS, a sport-based youth development program (YDP) that seeks to empower adolescent girls by teaching psychological skills. Sport-based YDPs have shown great potential for promoting healthy psychological development (Anderson-Butcher et al., 2013), and may even serve a preventative function by providing an effective setting for developing positive traits, attitudes, and skills (Weissberg, Kumpfer, & Seligman, 2003). The purpose of this study was to conduct a program evaluation to explore the effectiveness of ZGiRLS. Four specific aims of the study were to examine (a) a change in psychological skills (i.e., self-talk and goal setting), (b) a change in cognitive emotion regulation, (c) a change in negative and positive mental health outcomes (i.e., depression, anxiety, self-esteem, resilience), and (d) cognitive emotion regulation as a mediator in the relationship between psychological skills and mental health outcomes.

Participants were 107 adolescent girls (Mean age = 12.35; SD = 1.41), enrolled in an 8-session curriculum program. Utilizing a pre- and post-test design, ZGiRLS participants responded to the following questionnaires: Test of Performance Strategies, Athletic Coping Skills Inventory, Cognitive Emotion Regulation Questionnaire, Revised Child Anxiety and Depression Scale, Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale, and Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale.

The mediated model was evaluated with path analysis based on maximum likelihood estimation with SPSS Amos 25. Bootstrapped results of indirect, direct, and total effects were obtained. Results from the respecified model, (χ2 = 99.84, df = 9, p =

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